Space Center Houston reopening this summer

Explore the wonders of space exploration when Space Center Houston, the Official Visitor Center of NASA Johnson Space Center, reopens with exclusive Member Welcome Back Days July 17 and 18 and to the public beginning July 19.

Following state, local and CDC guidelines, the nonprofit will safely welcome back guests with new exhibits, spacious outdoor experiences and additional health and safety measures at the forefront of our daily operations.

To help ensure the best experience possible, prior to your arrival, guests are encouraged to review this Know Before You Go Guide below for tips on planning a visit and to download the free Space Center Houston app.

Space Center Houston’s reopening procedures include:

  • reopening with limited capacity in center.
  • new timed admission tickets for staggered entry to the museum. All guests, including members, must have a timed admission ticket. While children under three years old receive free admission, they still need a timed admission ticket. Guests can select tickets for every hour from when the center opens until 2 p.m. 
  • a NASA Tram Tour virtual boarding pass will allow guests to choose a boarding time via our free mobile app.
  • required face coverings for guests ages two and older, as well as crew members. In the event you are unable to wear a face covering due to a medical condition, we ask that you visit Space Center Houston when face coverings are no longer recommended by the CDC.
  • social distance practices throughout your visit, including the center’s queuing and Zero-G Diner.
  • a one-directional flow through our galleries.
  • plexiglass shields at ticket counters.
  • a new touchless entry with self-scan turnstiles.
  • a new concierge tent of crew members ready to support guest entry.
  • special hours for vulnerable populations from 9-10 a.m. on Tuesdays.
  • increased hand sanitizer stations.
  • touchless credit card transactions. Please plan accordingly as we will have limited cash only lines.
  • waived parking fee for a limited time.
  • best practices in cleanliness with enhanced daily cleaning and sanitized surfaces center-wide nightly.

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket

Get tickets

All guests, including members, must have a timed admission ticket. While children under three years old receive free admission, they still need a timed admission ticket. Guests can select tickets for every hour from when the center opens until 2 p.m.  Click here to reserve your time and purchase your ticket online.

Buy timed admission tickets

Already have tickets?

Guests who have non-dated Space Center Houston admission tickets will need to contact Space Center Houston’s Reservations Department to select a specific date and time for their visit prior to arriving at the Center. These guests can reserve their tickets ahead of time by sending their name, email address, phone number, and order confirmation number to our Reservations Department at reservations@spacecenter.org. Someone from the Reservations Department will then contact you to help you reserve your specific date and time. 

To redeem a non-dated Space Center Houston admission ticket or CityPASS at the center, guests will need to visit our new concierge at the entrance to Space Center Houston to reserve a day and time for their ticket. Note: the original tickets must presented at the concierge. 

Bag policy

For your safety and the safety of others, all bags must be screened by security officers prior to entering Space Center Houston. Clear bags are highly recommended. Backpacks, large duffel bags and suitcases, cannot be brought into the facility. No bags or purses larger than 8.5″ x 11″ (the size of a standard size piece of paper) will be allowed into the center. Lockers are not available for rental. Medical necessity bags and diaper bags, are only permitted when the contents will not fit into an 8.5″ x 11″ bag.

What to bring

The following items are allowed onto the Space Center Houston premise. Please be prepared to have your belongings searched by Space Center Houston security.

  • Bring water bottles or plan to purchase beverages. Vending machines with sodas and water will be available. To help slow the spread of COVID-19, all water fountains will be turned off.
  • Face covering for everyone ages two and older. Masks will be available for purchase at the center.
  • Small umbrellas
  • Clear, NFL-approved bags are permitted

What not to bring

Guests will be encouraged to take prohibited items back to their cars. Items left at the gates are not the responsibility of Space Center Houston.

  • No personal food is allowed in the center
  • Luggage is not allowed inside the center, and we are not able to store luggage
  • Stroller rental is not available
  • Weapons of any kind
  • Alcohol
  • Clothing or signs deemed obscene or indecent
  • Laser pointers
  • Large umbrellas (compact only)
  • Hover boards and other personal recreational devices
  • Pets (with exception of service animals)
  • Aerosol cans (hairspray, bug spray, sunscreen)
  • Glass of any kind, including perfume bottles
  • Signs of any kind or size
  • Large camera equipment such as telescoping poles (tripods, monopods, gimbals and selfie-sticks), lenses exceeding 6”, external lighting and audio equipment

Photo policy

Guests are welcome to bring small flash photography cameras. Large camera equipment such as telescoping poles (tripods, monopods, gimbals and selfie-sticks), lenses exceeding 6”, external lighting, aerial drones, and audio equipment are not allowed at Space Center Houston. Crew members will point out photo restrictions on the NASA tours.

How You Can Help

Guests and crew members are encouraged to stay home if you feel sick, have a temperature exceeding 100.4 F or are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

To help ensure ticket availability for the time you wish to visit, please purchase advance timed admission tickets online, prior to arriving at the center. You may purchase tickets onsite, however, daily capacity is limited.

Maintain physical spacing and follow the directions of signage.

Wash your hands frequently. Hand sanitizer stations are located throughout the center.

Individuals and families that have traveled internationally should not attend any educational programming until they have completed a 14-day quarantine and practiced social distancing.

NASA Tram Tour Boarding Passes

Download the free Space Center Houston mobile app to reserve a spot in line for the NASA Tram Tour and get your boarding pass during your visit.

Refunds and exchanges

Full-price non-timed Space Center Houston admission tickets and CityPASS:

If you purchased non-dated Space Center Houston admission tickets or a CityPASS, you have the following options:
  1. Reserve a specific date and time for your visit ahead of time by sending your name, email address, phone number, and order confirmation number to our Reservations Department at reservations@spacecenter.org. A crew member will contact you to help you reserve your specific date and time. 
  2. To reserve a specific date and time for your visit after arriving at the center, visit our new concierge at the entrance to Space Center Houston. Note: the original tickets must presented at the concierge.

Full-price timed Space Center Houston admission tickets:

To receive a refund for discounted timed admission tickets, you must contact our Reservations Department at reservations@spacecenter.org or (281) 283-4755 at least 48 hours in advance of the date/time on your tickets.

COUNTDOWN
TO ENTRY

-00:00:10
Download our app

-00:00:09
Get tickets online

-00:00:08
Cargo check

Remove prohibited items from your mission payload

-00:00:07
Visor down

Ages 2+ must wear a mask during their space adventure

-00:00:06
Start your adventure

Check in your timed admission ticket and get a NASA boarding pass

-00:00:05
Security check

-00:00:04
Crew portrait station

-00:00:03
Crew health
sanitizer station

-00:00:02
Scan your tickets

-00:00:01
Begin your mission

Frequently asked questions

Is everything going to be up and running?

We will safely welcome back guests with new exhibits, new live shows, spacious outdoor experiences and additional health and safety measures at the forefront of our daily operations.

Most of our permanent exhibits will be open. Due to COVID-19-related safety and security measures at Johnson Space Center, all of our NASA Tram Tours will visit Rocket Park until further notice. Following current state guidelines, our hands-on interactives including VR and simulators, our Moon and Mars touchstones, as well as our theaters, will be temporarily closed.

Guests will be among the first to experience our newest permanent exhibit, the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, displayed outside the center. Guests can walk around and underneath the first-stage booster spanning more than 156 feet long. It is the only Falcon 9 on public display outside of SpaceX’s headquarters and is the same type of rocket that launched NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft on May 30 for the Demo-2 mission, marking the first time since 2011 that astronauts have launched from American soil.

Guests can also take a tour of the spacious Independence Plaza exhibit, the only place you can walk inside a shuttle replica mounted on top of the historic shuttle carrier aircraft the NASA 905.

We plan to provide individually packaged food service options when we reopen. We will announce more reopening details, including food options, on our website and on social media in the coming weeks.

All Space Center Houston experiences are subject to change while the center continues to monitor state and local health and safety guidelines for reopening.

Is it safe for us to visit?

Space Center Houston is committed to the health and safety of our guests, volunteers and local community; and we have taken extraordinary steps to see that we keep our facility clean and safe for all.

We are following all the directives of the Centers for Disease Control/World Health Organization and all state and local guidelines.

We have been diligently working to enhance the guest experience while implementing additional health and safety procedures. When guests return to Space Center Houston, we want you to feel safe and inspired through our authentic science learning experiences.

We will have new protocols in place, including social distancing practices and special hours for vulnerable populations. Guests and employees will be asked to wear face coverings. We have also added self-scan turnstiles, sanitizing stations, plexiglass shields at ticket counters; and a one-directional experience through our galleries.

All employees will participate in a Return to Work orientation to learn about new procedures and how, together, we all play an important role in the health and safety of our community.

The center will continue to monitor any changing circumstances.

We are asking that all our guests please continue to take precautions to stay healthy and safe and refer to the CDC recommendations about best practices.

How do members reserve a timed admission ticket?

Members will be able to reserve a day and time through our online portal. Once at the center, members should present their membership card and their timed admission ticket.

What should I do if I have old, non-timed admission tickets?

Guests who have non-dated Space Center Houston admission tickets can reserve a specific date and time for your visit ahead of time by sending your name, email address, phone number, and order confirmation number to our Reservations Department at reservations@spacecenter.org. Someone from the Reservations Department will then contact you to help you reserve your specific date and time. 

To reserve a specific date and time for your visit with a non-dated Space Center Houston admission tickets or CityPASS while onsite at the center, visit our new concierge at the entrance to Space Center Houston. Note: the original tickets must presented at the concierge.

When will education programs or special events begin?

We will provide new Clean Room experiences offered through Space Center U and Explorer Camps July 13-Aug. 14. Inspired by NASA missions, the new Clean Room Explorer Camp experience engages children ages 6-11 and Space Center U engages youth ages 11-18 in high-fidelity clean room safety procedures along with science, technology, engineering and mathematics activities. Register today!

Individuals and families that have traveled internationally should not attend any educational programming until they have completed a 14-day quarantine and practiced social distancing.

When can I book a Level 9 Tour?

During our Level 9 Tour, guests get unprecedented behind-the-scenes access to multiple locations at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC), which is a working government facility. At this time, we are still determining how much access we will have to JSC when Space Center Houston reopens. We will not begin offering the Level 9 Tour until we know that we have enough access to make it a premium experience.

When can I book Lunch with an Astronaut tickets?

We will begin offering Lunch with an Astronaut again later this year. Until then, guests can attend our Astronaut Presentations every Friday and Saturday as well as Virtual Astronaut Visits.

When can I book a group visit?

We are able to book group visits now. Please contact our Reservations Department to book a group visit at reservations@spacecenter.org or +1 281-283-4755.

How can people still experience the center and science learning virtually?

Though our facility is temporarily closed, we continue to work to bring Space Center Houston to the public digitally. Space Center Houston is committed to making science and space exploration accessible for everyone.

Continue to explore space virtually with us! Join a virtual campout and engage in hands-on activities using household items to make science come to life in your backyard.

Connect with us on social media. We have several recurring weekly blog series including Mission Mondays, Trivia Wednesdays and the new History Up Close video series featuring an insider look at the museum’s extensive artifact collection.

Experience our monthly Space Center Houston’s Thought Leader Series, presented by UTMB Health. Hear from space experts on a variety of topics including current and former NASA flight controllers, retired NASA astronauts, leading women in space and more.

Take a virtual tour of the museum. Download the free Space Center Houston mobile app for augmented reality, videos and audio stories about the future and historic feats in human space exploration.

Can I reschedule a Level 9 tour?

Ticket holders for public, private and education programs scheduled during our closure will be provided with the options of rescheduling for a date after we reopen or receiving a refund.

If you purchased a Level 9 tour that would have taken place during the closure period, we have two options to offer you:

1. We will contact you as soon as Level 9 tours become available again to reschedule your tour for a future date of your choice.
2. You may cancel your Level 9 experience and receive a refund.

How does the closure affect my membership?

Thank you for being a part of Space Center Houston’s valued community of members. Your membership provides support that has made a big difference as we work to inspire and nurture future science, technology, engineering, and mathematics STEM explorers through science and space exploration.

We thank you for your continued support, and we hope you will join us when we reopen with exclusive Member Welcome Back Days July 17 and 18 prior to opening to the public on July 19.

Our relationship with you, our closest supporters, is extremely important to us. If you have any questions, please call our membership line at (281) 244-2105.

Have any people had the Coronavirus at your facility or in the Houston area?

There have been no cases of exposure to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) reported in connection with the center. As Houston’s leading science and space exploration learning center and a trusted community space, we are acting in an abundance of caution with the health and safety of our guests, staff and volunteers as our top priority and responsibility.

To learn the latest information about any public health threats, please refer to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website at www.cdc.gov.

Are face masks required?

To help slow the spread of COVID-19, face coverings are required for Space Center Houston guests ages two and older, as well as crew members.

What is an appropriate facial covering for my visit?

Facial coverings in line with CDC’s guidelines are considered appropriate and should cover an individual’s nose and mouth. Costume masks are not permitted.

What about face coverings when guests are eating?

Tables and seating have been arranged so that guests can remove their face coverings while they eat.

Does my child need to wear a face covering?

Per CDC guidelines, children ages two and younger are not required to wear facial coverings.

What if I don’t have a face covering?

Face covers will be available for purchase at the entrance and in our gift shop.

What if I don’t want to wear a mask?

Given this unprecedented situation, we appreciate everyone’s understanding as we navigate these challenges as carefully as possible. In accordance with the CDC’s recommendations, face coverings are required during your visit. Guests without masks will not be allowed entry to Space Center Houston. Together, we can keep each other safe and healthy.

What if I have a disability that prevents me from wearing a mask?

For the health and safety of all of our guests and employees, face coverings are required, per CDC guidance. If you are unable to wear a face covering, we ask that you visit Space Center Houston when face coverings are no longer recommended by the CDC.

These precautions are temporary and are subject to change at any time based on the recommendations of federal, state and local officials. Please be patient as we continue to monitor the situation and make adjustments to keep our guests and crew members safe. We will continue to assess the situation and make adjustments to the availability of exhibits, tours and experiences as deemed appropriate and safe. To help protect against the spread of COVID-19 and help ensure guest and employee safety, we have taken and will continue taking actions to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus based on the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

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